ERIC Number: ED380492
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1994
College Grades: An Exploratory Study of Policies and Practices. College Board Report No. 94-1.
Ekstrom, Ruth B.; Villegas, Ana Maria
Policies and practices related to grading at 14 colleges and universities (8 public and 6 private) and how they have changed between 1980 and 1990 were studied along with the grading orientations and practices of over 500 faculty members. Changes between 1980 and 1990 that may have affected grades include greater prescription of the curriculum, greater differentiation in grading systems, and increased use of student evaluations of faculty members. While none of the department chairpersons said there were specific departmental grading policies, about one quarter of the faculty felt that there was a policy of grading against specific standards, and about two-thirds said that their departments expected them to grade against specific standards, even though there was no defined policy. Some faculty members perceived grades as formal and objective, while others thought they could not be reduced to objective measures. Most believed that grades are higher than they used to be because faculty expects less of students today. Eighty-one percent of faculty said they sometimes used a criterion-referenced approach, but only 64% said they used it most often. Twenty-nine percent used a norm-referenced approach most often. Twenty-four tables present study findings. (Contains 91 references.) (SLD)
Descriptors: Change, College Faculty, Criterion Referenced Tests, Educational Policy, Educational Practices, Educational Trends, Grades (Scholastic), Grading, Higher Education, Informal Assessment, Norm Referenced Tests, Standards, Student Evaluation, Student Evaluation of Teacher Performance, Teacher Expectations of Students, Trend Analysis
College Board Publications, Box 886, New York, NY 10101-0886 ($15).
Publication Type: Reports - Research
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: College Board, New York, NY.; Educational Testing Service, Princeton, NJ.